Sunday Serial #9

I’m following a nineteenth century tradition and publishing some of “Leefdale” by Michael Murray in weekly instalments.

You can find the links to previous instalments on this page.

So, if you like the Dickensian idea of reading your novels in weekly instalments,
read on …..

‘Are you going to stay there all night?’ Greg asked.

Sharon was lying on the carpet, naked, watching him as he hastily dressed. She’d been lying in this position ever since he’d extricated himself from her. Her blouse was scrunched up between her legs absorbing the last residue of fluids. She wanted only to stay like this for a while, staggering her return from that far, far shore on to which she’d been transported by the crashing waves of her orgasm. Why was he talking to her? She wanted only to be quiet and still and facilitate her soul’s reunion with the material body from which it had partially and rapturously separated; a body that was still registering faint yet unpredictable aftershocks of indescribable pleasure. They were only an echo of their former intensity but she’d no wish for these exquisite little tremors and shivers to cease. She couldn’t bear the last vestiges of ecstasy to vanish, restoring her again to the plane of the ordinary. Yet how difficult it was to sustain the thrill of that orgasm: to maintain her tenuous hold on those ineffable sensations. She wanted those feelings to last forever. She wanted to lie still and quiet and think only of the sex; she wanted to postpone all thoughts of that broken promise to Louise. She wanted to forget that, yet again, sex had made her her own gaoler.

She watched Greg putting on his underpants. Those same underpants that Pam had probably washed and ironed. Don’t go there, Sharon, she told herself. Better to recall the way he’d stared at her bare breasts in rapt admiration: how he’d spread his fingers wide and stroked both of them, lightly at first, so she could feel nothing but the tantalising brush of his hands over her soft, bare skin. And then his tongue going and making quick, urgent licks and kisses all over her breasts and in the cleft between them before taking each nipple between his teeth, gently bringing his teeth together over it and then the nipple going deeper into his mouth, his tongue flicking and agitating it into hardness. The memory made her nipples swell and grow hard again. She felt a faint renewal of the blind, moist welling up from the depths of her.

She smiled at him and said, ‘I’ll get up in a minute. Just coming down to earth.’

He looked conceited. ‘It was that good, eh?’

‘No, it was terrible,’ she said, and laughed. He laughed too, but afterwards the look he gave her was uncertain.

Read on with the Free Preview below.

Happy 70th Birthday NHS. Thanks for saving my life! #NHS70

I wrote a blogpost last year on my Cabbage and Semolina Blog to celebrate the 69th birthday of the NHS.

I’d had a cancer diagnosis a few weeks earlier and didn’t think I’d still be here to celebrate the 70th birthday of our NHS.

But I am!

I was at the chemo unit of our local hospital on Tuesday having my 9th cycle of maintenance therapy (21st cycle overall) and today am halfway through a 46 hour chemo infusion at home via a vacuum pump, which a district nurse will remove later this afternoon.

image credit: By Ministry of Information Photo Division Photographer [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


our National Health Service for saving my life and keeping me alive.

I value every extra day I’ve been given and I value our NHS beyond words.


doctors, nurses, admin and technical staff.

You’re all amazing and wonderful and appreciated to the nth degree on this special day of celebration for 70 years of our wonderful NHS.

But on every other day you’re overworked and underpaid.

image credit: By Ministry of Information Photo Division Photographer [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


Aneurin Bevan and the Labour Government for starting our NHS after the Labour landslide in 1945. (And no thanks to the Tories who opposed the founding of our NHS every step of the way.)

And for rescuing our NHS from years of Tory neglect after the Labour landslide in 1997.

And isn’t it ironical that in  this 70th anniversary year we’ve had to crowdfund over £150k to try and get a Judicial Review to stop the ultimate step to privatisation with the present Health Secretary’s ACO plans.


Dr Colin Hutchinson, Prof Allyson Pollock, Prof Sue Richards, Dr Graham Winyard and the late Prof Stephen Hawking for your bold and successful campaign (whatever the outcome you and we are winners because we stood up to undemocratic, under=handed trickery).

Urgent Legal Action for Our NHS

Thankyou for standing up to this Tory government’s ideological determination for ever more privatising and asset stripping of our NHS.

And how remarkable is this campaign to Take Back our NHS:

Best birthday present for our NHS? Booting out Branson and co

which has now got the support of Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary, Jon Ashworth.

Read The Pledge here and ask your MP to sign it here.

I hope you enjoy whatever you’re doing today to celebrate 70 years of our NHS. I know I’ll be enjoying my day!

If you’d like to read my 69th NHS Birthday blogpst it’s Belated Birthday Greetings to our NHS.

Thanks for reading my blog today.

And you might also like:

Interesting photo collection from pre-NHS days

Does our NHS have enough beds?

Save one life you’re a hero. Save 100 lives you’re a nurse. #NHS

image credit: By Ministry of Information Photo Division Photographer [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons




Interesting photo collection from pre-NHS days

The archive at Historic England has found a collection of 4000 photographs of nurses in pre-NHS days.

Search MED01/ for the whole collection or MED01 egBrighton for a specific place to see if there are any photos from a hospital near you.

This is my favourite photo so far. Click on the image for an enlargement.

Thanks for visiting my blog today.

You might also like:

Save one life you’re a hero. Save 100 lives you’re a nurse. #NHS

Our #NHS Then and Now

Does our NHS have enough beds?

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Does anyone like corned beef and cabbage?

Today is #CornedBeefandCabbage Day. I wrote this blogpost last year on my Cabbage and Semolina Blog. It didn’t get many views so I thought the post could have another outing here.

The post includes a couple of newspaper clippings from the British Newspaper Archive.

I’ve had a subscription to the BNA for over two years and whenever I visit the site I always find treasure. It’s great for family history researching and for general interest as well providing many unique insights into times gone by. It’s at

I wandered lonely as a cloud in March!

The special flower for March is the beautiful daffodil.

The Old Farmer’s Almanac says

The daffodil stands for unequaled love, so giving this flower to someone expresses quite a lot. With their bright yellow petals, daffodils seem the perfect way to say that the sun is always shining whenever your significant other is around.

image credit:

But Interflora goes a bit further and specifies the narcissus as the extra special flower for March.

No flower embodies spring quite like the daffodil, so it’s quite appropriate that March’s birth flower is the narcissus. These cheerful yellow flowers are named after the character in Greek mythology who was so in love with himself he drowned in a pool of water whilst admiring his own reflection.

Narcissi aren’t just a symbol of vanity though, they are said to symbolise new beginnings, rebirth and rejuvenation. They also represent faithfulness due to their ability to bloom year after year.

For different cultures around the world daffodils represent different things. In China they are seen as a sign of good luck and prosperity because they bloom around the time of Chinese New Year. In Wales they are celebrated as the national flower.

image credit:

The daffodil is also the fund raising symbol for the cancer care charity Marie Curie.

The charity started at the Marie Curie Hospital , 2 Fitzjohn’s Avenue, Hampstead. This pioneering hospital was opened in 1930 by Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin, specialising in the “radiological treatment of women suffering from cancer and allied diseases”. It was staffed by medical women, and cared for 700 patients a year in 39 beds, with facilities for radium and x-ray therapy, and modern pathological and research laboratories.

In 1944, most of the hospital was destroyed by a direct hit in an air raid. It took three weeks to recover the hospital’s radium sources, which were stored in steel cylinders in the floor.

In 1948, five members of the re-establishment committee set up to oversee rebuilding of the hospital decided to separate themselves from the new NHS. Instead, they sought to perpetuate the name of Marie Curie in the charitable medical field.

The Marie Curie International Memorial was formally established on 6 July 1948, and shortly afterwards became the Marie Curie Memorial Foundation. This was the beginning of the charity that is now known as Marie Curie.

When I was at Junior school in the 1950s we had to earn lines of poetry off-by-heart. I chose “Daffodils” by William Wordsworth and I can remember every line to this day.

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine
and twinkle on the Milky Way,
They stretched in never-ending line
along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
tossing their heads in sprightly dance.
The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
in such a jocund company:
I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
what wealth the show to me had brought:
For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.

image credit:

Thanks for visiting my blog today.
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